Tuesday, September 21, 2010


I have loved praying mantis' ever since I was a child, and so when I saw this one in the yard today, I took some pictures and decided to write about them.  They are absolutely harmless in your gardens, so if you see them, be sure to leave them alone.  Even though they are ferocious-looking, they are actually very beneficial insects in your beds.  They are a member of the grasshopper family (and if you've read my blog in the past, you know that earwigs and grasshoppers are my two LEAST favorite PESTS in the garden), but I love these graceful, docile insectsThey feed on grasshoppers, aphids, mites, caterpillars and other harmful insects.  They are long and thin, with prominent eyes and enormous front legs, often held up in a praying-like motion; hence the name "Praying Mantis."  They use their front legs to 'catch' their prey.  They lay their "egg sacs" around this time of year--a 1 1/2-inch long gooey sac that dries and hardens that is usually 'glued' between your bricks, or under your rain gutter or the side of buildings.The egg sacs "hatch" with about 30-50 little tiny mantis' in late spring, when the temperatures get about 70 degrees.  I hope the one I saw today is ready to lay an egg sac.  I actually sent away for 6 egg sacs in March of 2008.  But this year I've only seen three in the yard, so I'm hoping for more next year.   If you're interested in sending away for egg sacs, GARDENING ZONE is the company I ordered from--you can go online and order in the spring.  They were $2.90 an 'egg case'.   
Susanne Holland Spicker Mother, Grandmother, Homemaker, Gardener, Teacher, Photographer

Passion is defined as the love of, or the object(s) of affection and emotion. I am passionate about family, friends, flowers, food, photography and fabulous music! This blog is dedicated to those loves.


  1. Only you, Mama, would make a varying collage of this awkward, green giant. For that, I am proud. Good job! Miss you.